Defiant Indian students to hold more screenings of BBC documentary on Modi

At the Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi, hundreds of students watched the documentary on mobile phones and laptops on Tuesday after power was cut in the campus before a scheduled screening, said student leader Aishe Ghosh.

The university had threatened disciplinary action if the documentary was screened, saying it had not given permission for a show that might disturb peace and harmony on campus.

“It was obviously the administration that cut off the power,” Ghosh said. “We are encouraging campuses across the country to hold screenings as an act of resistance against this censorship,” Ghosh said.

The media coordinator for the university administration did not comment when asked about the power cut on the campus.

Ghosh said members of a right-wing student group threw bricks at the students hoping to watch the documentary hurting several, and students had complained to police.

A spokesman for the right-wing student group did not respond to a message seeking comment.

A police spokesperson did not immediately respond to queries.

The 2002 Gujarat violence erupted after a train carrying Hindu pilgrims caught fire, killing 59. Crowds later rampaged through Muslim neighbourhoods.

Modi has denied accusations that he did not do enough to stop the riots and was exonerated in 2012 following an inquiry overseen by the Supreme Court. A petition questioning his exoneration was dismissed last year.

The BBC has said the documentary was “rigorously researched” and involved a wide range of voices and opinions, including responses from people in Modi’s Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party.


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